Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #4-95

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 4, Number 95

                  Tuesday, 16 June 1998

Today's Topics:

                        That chord
                 Nonsvch: Listen and Chat
       While we're waiting for the real thing.....
                  Another aural surprise
                     What's Cooking!
                      Humble Cowpie
                 XtC/Chalkhills sightings
                      Survey sez...
                     Clockwork Orange
                    Items of Interest
                 Favorite XTC song memory
                        Boy oh boy
                    my survey answers
                       Andy's Games
                         I is...
  Single, enjoys long walks on the beach and parasailing
                    Oranges and Lemons
                     XTC Play At Home
                    my turn, my turn!
                      martin newell
               Re: My very last response...
                   Re: Social Darwinism


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So we can fly away.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 20:44:06 -0700
From: Jason Kirkman__Carol Kawase <>
Subject: That chord

Hi, everybody,

I'm not a guitarist, but many years ago someone who is one showed me how to
play the first chord of Hard Day's Night.  I can't guarantee it's right,
but try it and see what you think:  play the low E, A, D, and G strings
open, finger first fret on the B and third fret on the high E.  I don't
know guitar notation but 000013 could represent it.  So you're playing
EADGCG.  Use a crisp downstroke on your Ricky 12-string.  Sounds pretty
close, yes?  This would also square with an earlier post that Dave appeared
to be playing open strings when he demonstrated it.

Come to think of it, Mitch, could you just ask Dave how to do it and post
his answer to the list, please?

Finally, a big thank you to Ian Stewart for the videos.  I just got them
and am enjoying them immensely.  Need XTC video?  Talk to Ian.

Gotta go.  Nice chatting with y'all.

One of the Jasons


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 14 Jun 1998 17:07:50 EDT
Subject: Nonsvch: Listen and Chat

Hello -

If you don't have America Online access, you probably won't find this message
very interesting or useful... scroll down a bit and carry on.

If, however, you're on AOL and would like to join our weekly summer XTC
listening parties, please visit the AOLvis (Costello) chat home page at

This is the site I'd been using for announcing Elvis Costello listening
parties, but over the summer, we thought we'd try a different artist.  And
since XTC are my other musical heroes, they were a natural choice.  We've had
great fun listening to Skylarking and Oranges & Lemons over the past two
weeks, so I hope lots of you will join us on Tuesday evening (10 pm eastern
time) for Nonsvch.  This was the first XTC album I ever owned, and it really
confirmed my love for them as a band and especially for Andy as a songwriter.

E-mail me if you want any further info on the listening parties and how to


Janis Van Court

Religion:  Wiccan/Neo-Pagan
Political Party: Democrat
Drugs:  In my 33 years, I've only lightly experimented.
Job: Sales Administrator/Mother Goddess
Dream: Life of bliss with DinsdaleP

"Bird and bear and hare and fish,
 Give your love her fondest wish."  --  a Mid-World lovers' rhyme


Date: 15 Jun 98 09:57:52 AST
Subject: While we're waiting for the real thing.....
Message-ID: <>

1) Alright, think "Cherry In Your Tree" or "Stupidly Happy".  Fit it with a
bubblegum Andy Partridge production and his cheeky bassline and sugar-sweet
backing vox, trashy clatter-drums by Dave Mattacks, a supercharged Bob
Clearmountain mix and one of the most insidious hooks of recent times and
what do you get?

"You Are", one of two AP-produced tracks on the new Stephen Duffy album, 'I
Love My Friends', that's what!  (The other one's fine too, featuring a nice
early Kinks-style guitar figure).

These songs are not really representative of the whole album, which is a
finely-wrought autobiographical work from Duffy, who excels on a number of
instruments and is also joined on various songs by Alex James (Blur), Aimee
Mann, Rick Menck (Velvet Crush, Matthew Sweet), Stephen Street as producer,
et al.   The songs range from joyful and flivolous hard-edged pop, to
heartbreakingly sad folkish balladry.  I can't recommend it highly enough,
even if the two AP songs represent some sort of "fix" before we get to hear
the new XtC stuff  (and it looks like we've got plenty of time before that

2) Okay, I'll play your silly game:

Religion:  music
Politics:  "they're all like game show hosts to me"
Drugs:  only users lose drugs
Job:  Fantasist  (ie, I work for the government)
Dream: wet, usually



Message-ID: <>
From: "k. siegel" <>
Subject: Another aural surprise
Date: Sun, 14 Jun 1998 19:10:14 PDT

Wes "He doesn't quite bend so much as he audibly cracks" Hanks
recently wrote:

>PS - Heard "The Disappointed" last Saturday on the P.A. at the "Wet N
>Wild" water park. cool

Hey cool, I heard "King for a Day" at Burger King. Nearly choked on my
Whopper with glee...

Swindon on my mind,


Message-Id: <s584daef.073@BTA.ORG.UK>
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 08:27:08 +0100
Subject: What's Cooking!


Someone (Mitch?) recently reported that all of XTC's BBC sessions were
to be dusted-down and set-free. This is confirmed by the latest (June)
Cooking Vinyl newsletter which states:

"XTC are curently mixing their long-awaited album of new material to
be released in Janaury 1999. To shorten the wait until its release in
September (tbc) there will be a box set entitled The Complete BBC
Sessions (COOK CD 152), four CDs featuring the entire recordings XTC
made for the BBC".

No details of any distribution beyond Britain/Europe (or whatever
'territories' the CV deal covers).

The band gets quite a few namechecks throughout ("Testicular Dinner"
is now official CV 'product' - COOK CD 145 - and the label seems
rightfully proud to have 'em on board (which must augur well - albeit
in a 'big fish/small pond' kinda way).

Finally, for those of you who just can't get enough of Stephen Duffy,
the communique also reveals that the Lilac Time are recording now for
a Jan 99 release (wow, will CV's sales soar that month?!) and reunite
on stage at London's Barbican (strange choice, guys).

Two other snippets:
May I be the 522nd person to tell Mark Fisher that Dave Gregory
spanked his plank on 'XTC Play at Home'. I recall the chord being a
bar (3rd fret with other fingering on 5th string/5th fret and 3rd
string/5th fret)....

...London's Time Out recently had a listing for 'The Mayors of
Simpleton' playing at the Hope & Anchor. Anyone know anything about
them? And was the choice of venue deliberate???


David Fatscher


Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 10:09:58 +0100
From: Dominic Lawson <>
Subject: Humble Cowpie

Hi, my name's Dom. I trust you have all learned a great lesson from me
in recent weeks, i.e. how being needlessly insulting and belligerent
is a poor way of integrating with a new mail group. Apologies to those
of you who have been offended by my misplaced assaults! If you would
be generous enough to allow me, I would like to begin afresh by saying
the following...

I am, helpfully, a massive XTC fan. Have been for years. Although I am
probably coming from a different musical angle to many of you, I am
sure I share your enthusiasm for the band. As you can probably guess,
my favourite XTC tunes are things like "Complicated Game", "Travels In
Nihilon" and "Train Running Low On Soul Coal"; perhaps a reflection of
my taste as a whole. For me, XTC fit in perfectly with many of my
other favourite bands, whether it be Gang Of Four, Cardiacs, Primus or
Iron Monkey. I love all the more tuneful, delicate XTC stuff as well,
but I'm a bit of a headbanger at heart, so it was the delicious
dischord at which the band once excelled which initially provoked my

Unfortunately I have seriously misjudged the tone of Chalkhills, and
have subsequently failed to make many friends since my first
contribution. I'm sure we can all enlighten each other when it comes
to music - we all travel on different paths, after all - I was just
surprised by some of the names that cropped up in the first few
digests I read.  Again, I am sorry for any offence caused and would
like very much to continue contributing, in a slightly less
confrontational manner! I won't pretend to have changed my mind about
some of the things I have written, but I will freely admit that I have
been unreasonable and over-zealous in my attempts to stir things up.

Finally, thanks to Don Parker for his good humoured assistance. My
first Chalkhill pal!




Message-ID: <>
From: "Miller, Ed" <>
Subject: XtC/Chalkhills sightings
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 09:31:00 -0600

Hi, everyone....

I normally wouldn't post the fact that I heard Dear God on local Denver
radio twice in two days, but yesterday a third thing happened that made
me chuckle.

US West, the local phone company, is running a special on their caller
ID product which comes with a display unit.  At the end of the
commercial.... zoom to a tight shot of the Caller ID display and what
name appears?  None other than "Marc Cuevas".  Those of you who read the
digest regularly know we have our own Mark Cuevas who was a CC97
contributor and is organizing the Chalkhills Originals tape.

What could be next on the horizon?  An unsolicited testimonial on the
merits of Guinness Stout by Peter Fitzpatrick?  A Netherlands Tourist
Board promo by Mark Strijbos?  A public service announcement promoting
RIF (Reading is Fundamental) by Harrison Sherwood?  Maybe a new
infomercial for a fantastic, new household cleaning product called JD
SMX? Or Yazbek?

Eyes peeled,

Ed "A mind is a terrible thing to waste" Miller


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 10:17:11 -0600
Subject: Survey sez...

To learn more, follow the links...

Religion:  Merely a Man  (see also "The Age of Reason")
Political Sympathies:  The Green Man  (not perfect or powerful, but a
step in the right direction!)
Job:  Writer / Marketing & Public Relations Consultant
Dreams:  Real by Reel  -- silent movies make a comeback during the 2001
XTC reunion tour!

- John


Message-ID: <001101bd987f$28bdd540$1200a8c0@collection.TMS>
From: "Richard Feaster" <>
Subject: Alehouse
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 13:00:46 -0400

dear fellow fans,

I was recently reading through my old copies of
the LE and found pictures of D Gregory performing
with a band called 'Alehouse.'
Can anyone tell me anything about this band?
I am curious, (favorite color here).

Richard Feaster


Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 13:56:53 -0400 (EDT)
From: Ken Clinger <>
Subject: Clockwork Orange
Message-ID: <>

With the recent Clockwork Orange comments, I'm curious about the present
status of the film in the UK. The last I'd heard (several years ago) it
was essentially banned there. Is this still true? Can you rent/buy it on
videotape etc?

I'm trying to find out if there's an extra element involved, when someone
from the UK references Clockwork Orange.

-*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*-
   You have just read e-mail by Ken Clinger.
You may now resume your previously-scheduled life.
-*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*- -*-


Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 14:07:44 -0400
Subject: Items of Interest
Message-Id: <1560*/PN=Rich.Wayne/OU=sb1/O=dowcor/PRMD=dj/ADMD=mci/C=US/@MHS>

Because i'm getting ready to move at the end of the month, i've
been throwing out, selling and giving away lots of stuff. Going
through my box of XTC items, i had forgotten just how much I
loved them. I still love the band, especially Colin's bummer
songs, but I am no longer attached to the material things. So,
its ALL available to Chalkhillians. contact me. - rich


Message-Id: <QQetxh00596.199806151821@relay5.UU.NET>
Date: 15 Jun 98 14:26:21 -0500
From: Jeff Partyka <>
Subject: Favorite XTC song memory

Cheryl asked:
> I'm sure this question has been asked ,maybe recently?  But since there
seems to be a bunch of new people posting to the list, What is your most
favourite memory attached to an XTC song?

My favorite memory attached to an XTC song must be from Christmas Day, 1987,
when I opened one of the CDs I'd just unwrapped under my tree (the other was
John Hiatt's "Bring the Family"). I had been an XTC fan for about nine
months, ever since I'd discovered "Skylarking," and now I was holding in my
hands "Chips Off the Chocolate Fireball" by the Dukes of Stratosphear.

I pulled the shrink wrap away from the cardboard longbox (which I actually
saved, believe it or not), took out the CD, and went right to Track 7:
"Vanishing Girl" (I knew from my rock mag reading that this was where the
new "Psonic Psunspot" began). That gorgeous, wonderfully distinctive riff
came ringing out of my speakers, and that single acoustic guitar strum ...
and then it happened. The moment I first heard the riff AND acoustic guitar
start chiming together, and Colin's miraculous bass obligato just before his
lead vocal starts, just immediately DID IT for me, the way you always hope
new music will. I loved it immediately, it was a great sound. I may have
been an XTC fan already thanks to "Skylarking," but that was the moment I
knew I would be a lifelong XTC fanatic. It was a great moment ... and now,
whenever I hear "Vanishing Girl," it amazes me that it has NEVER WORN OFF. I
still get goosebumps when I hear that intro, and the chorus harmonies, and
the rhythmic stop/start at the end of the middle eight ...

I'll stop now. Suffice it to say that "Vanishing Girl" to this day is always
near the top of my list of favorite songs, by anyone.

Long live the Dukes.

Jeff Partyka


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 14:50:47 EDT
Subject: Boy oh boy


I thought this digest was about the discussion about XTC and things relating
to XTC.  I know that XTC won't have an album out until next year, but there
must be something to talk about them.  I pass over stuff about Sterolab (even
though they're great) and any other bands.  If you want to discuss other bands
start another mailing list.

I do listen to other people besides XTC.  My musical range goes from Olivia
Newton-John to Pink Floyd.  I also have a couple rap albums in my collection.
I just like listening to XTC, because they play great music.  I think it's

Well, that's all I have to say.  Bye for now.



Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 14:16:55 -0700
From: "Harold Freshour" <>
Message-ID: <>
Subject: my survey answers
Organization: MailExcite  (

*delurk* Hi all. Thought I'd throw my 2 cents worth.

Religion: SubGenius, though I am a priest in good (?) standing with the
Universal Life Church.
Political Party: I'm a registered Democrat, but some of my best friends are
Republicans, radicals or Libertarians. Thus I like to think I'm open minded,
but not overly so.
Drugs: music, a beer every once in a great while, television, Coca-cola.
Job: Accountant
Dream: If I have to pick one, it would beto make as many people happy as
possible. There are many more dreams where whence that came.

Ok... XTC-related content: I just got the Peter Blegvad CD Just Woke Up at a
library sale for 50 cents. I like it a lot! How lucky was that?

Anyway... please visit my site. :) *back to lurking*
Harold Freshour====================Demolished Sanctuary

Free web-based email, Forever, From anywhere!


From: William H Stoner III <bilbo@Progressive-Systems.Com>
Message-Id: <9806152124.AA01676@stingray>
Subject: Andy's Games
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 17:24:44 -0400 (EDT)

Sayeth Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse>
> Dear Chalkers,

[..stuff deleted for brevity...]
> Yes i do, it's part of the XTC Play At Home documentary made by ITV
> in the early 80's. Dave "showing off" his collection of guitars is
> one of the best and most interesting bits in this film.
> Another great bit is where Andy is showing a few of the games he's
> designed; they really look great and very playable.

I too thought that Andy's games looked like they'd be quite enjoyable.
This is probably a daft suggestion as, if I begin to think of the
logistics (labour, etc.), it could get ugly fast.

But limited releases of some of those games might be a way to raise some
capitol. Not that they should stop making music to manufacture board
games, but they did look fun to play.  Antheap surely looked like a
rollicking good time.

Maybe a rule book / self manufacturing guide for the games. Not sure
how the copyright/patent issues would work there but if Andy would
retain the rights to any mass market applications. I'd surely buy a
copy of such a beast.

I'm looking forward to the 4 CD set and the Genesis box at the end
of June, finally.



Message-Id: <>
From: "Noble K Thomas" <>
Subject: I is...
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 16:56:28 -0500

Noble K. (Toby) Thomas tosses his hat into the ring... wait a second, on
second thought give me that hat back, I might need it to protect my bald
noggin in all this sun!

RELIGION: born a presbyterian (the pompous crowd), life has converted me
into a believer in this idea that a benevolent creative force shimmers
throughout our universe (in other words, a solitary atom that evolved over
20 billion years given the right conditions). And I respect that force. I
don't fear it. Would like to completely grok it someday.

POLITICS: one issue at a time on its own merits. Nurture long-term
development while fulfilling short-term need. The economics/market forces
of the republican and the mercy and compassion of the democrat. And let 'em
have their guns... just don't sell them any bullets.

DRUGS: pour me a glass of that sweet burgundy, maybe that will help to ease
my pain, burgundy I guess you're my only friend.

DREAM: the current dream is to write a tv pilot of an X-Files ripoff called
SPIRIT QUEST... and to sell it to somebody.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 16:23:25 -0600
From: Jason Garcia <>
Subject: Single, enjoys long walks on the beach and parasailing

Dear Chalklickers,

I've been mostly silent lately as I've been scrambling to complete tracks
for these upcoming compilations, but now I've decided to SPEAK OUT!!!

Statistics they don't say a lot...

...but regardless, here goes:

RELIGION: I've always been agnostic, because I could never understand
atheists.  If you're telling me there is or isn't a God, I expect proof.

PARTY PREFERENCE: I prefer darker beer to light, so whichever one has the
best beer, I'm there.

DRUGS: Someone said "music" earlier, and I was about to say that, but I
think music's more like my eternal lover.  If I ever get married, that poor
woman's going to have to compete with music, and I wouldn't wish that on
anyone.  Alcohol is my only poison (in moderation, of course).

JOB: Full time: pretending I'm worth more than I actually am at the moment.
(this isn't making me any money) Almost-full-time: waiter. (this is)

DREAM:  To end up like Andy Partridge (loosely interpreted).

So that's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

TOP 40


Message-ID: <01b401bd98b0$85c22080$e6965ed1@nate>
From: "Gineen" <>
Subject: Oranges and Lemons
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 18:54:14 -0400

SuBjEct: Oranges and Lemons

Does anyone else agree that Oranges and Lemons is a masterpiece?
Hahha funny word to use........Masterpiece.     Well I just fancy it.
God I am loving it lately.
"This is your life and you do what you want to do, this is your life and you
spend it alllllllllllll."
What's with this almost seasonal thing I have with XTC? It's that constant
circulation of my XTC albums......It's been O and L's the past few weeks. Do
most people grow bored on a tape that plays over and over? Am I normal?
Guess Not. Oh well............but seriously.....I mean, why don't I lose
interest? I don't even think of it as music I am listening to, It's just an
extension of my reality constantly flowing through my day to day bustle.

Of course we all know Skylarking is the groovy summer stuff. It's got the
little crickets n stuff :-).
Ok that's all..........I know, all my boring details........Love you all. Be
good! Email meeee!

I wondered if anyone might be kind enough to email me and let me know if
there is in fact an XTC get together in Boston or nearby that is happening
Thanks a million.........Gineen.


Message-Id: <>
From: Gillian Whitten <>
Subject: XTC
Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 22:45:15 -0600

To whom it may concern,

	Any information as to where I can find the Andy Partridge "The Bull
With The Golden Guts" cassette?  I know it was a limited edition fan club
cassette, but if there was a way I could get this, it would be much
appreciated.  Thanks in advance.

Gillian Whitten


From: sfrankli@ECHG.ORG.UK
Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 13:06:46 +0100
Subject: XTC Play At Home

 From Steve Franklin

I have been following chalkhills for a month or so and thought it was time
for me to try and contribute.
(First introduced to the band by Noel Ponting then of Dursley now of
Tetbury in early 80's
It's a long story but went on to meet Jules and Juliet, who fly the flag
for XTC in Bloomfontaign (sp?) on the outskirts of Paris.)
The lack of more success for the band is a major frustration and I cant
help thinking that in 50 or 100 years time their music will be re
discovered and they will get (albeit phostumously) the credit they deserve.
I am particularly interested in the jazz influences in the music which
comes to the fore in Andy Partridges Through the Hill project. Also the
more sombre tracks form Colin Moulding (Bungalow / dying etc) I have always
thought of the band as portraying English 'POP' music at its best and could
be perhaps likened to the cousins of Squeeze who appear to be the more
streetwise jack the lads form the Capital rather than the more naive
younger relations from the country ! Both bands have the ability to
entertain through every day experiences but XTC 's work takes a little more
work to become accessible- if that doesn't sound pompous.
Enough self indulgent drivel. Some where in my old Betamax Video collection
I have a copy of a recording of a documentary about the band from about
1983/4. I haven't seen it for years but as I recall it shows footage of the
band being interviewed in an old cafe in Old Town (Swindon) and videos of
tracks like Human Alchemy.  I also have a clip showing the band performing
This World over on Mike Reed's Swap Shop from a couple of years later.
I could be persuaded to dig them out and copy them if someone can find me a
copy of Rory Gallagher live in Cork Video.
Can't wait for the new album, 6-7 years is too long  (yes Jules, Nonsuch
was 1992)

Favourite thought .................. XTC performing live again.


Message-ID: <80AD0BCF38A7D111A1F70000C0BFEFE3086276@PIBCRMEXH001>
From: "McDonald, Roger" <>
Subject: my turn, my turn!
Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 15:46:15 +1000

Okay, okay, how do you do this...

Religion: I actually follow (or try to follow) the teachings of an
Indian prophet called Sivenanda -      you think I'm joking don't you?
Did you know that Buddha was a Hindu?...
Politics: Extreme left of centre and deeply embarassed at the strong
showing of the One Nation Party in the current state elections (what a
horrible mess!). If they weren't so interested in guns and screwing the
Aboriginals they'd be quite amusing!
Drugs: Anything I can get my hands on but always in moderation (ALWAYS
in moderation kids...)
Instruments played: Guitar and Penis (I'm probably better at the latter
than the former but hey, you knew that already)
Occupation:Public Servant (natch!)
Dream: I'm at this big Hollywood party and talking right up close to
Vanessa Redgrave with this huge black hairy bogie hanging out of my nose
down onto my top lip and it's going in and out as I breathe. Finally she
tips me off about it so (quite unembarassed) I wipe it off and out onto
my cheek and continue talking like nothing ever happened.... Aaaw, I get
it ...DREAMS
Okay, to buy back the Rickenbacker Guitar I sold about five years ago -
I know whose got it - I just need the readies...
To write Captain Sensible's biography! Isn't Stately Homes of England
one of the best XTC songs they never wrote????
Favorite XTC Album: Drums and Wires
Least Favorite XTC Album: Mummer (Punk Jethro Tull more like it! - come
on, do your worst, ya worms!)

awaiting your insults and general indifference

RogerFromOz (the troll under the bridge)


Message-ID: <>
From: Cait Wright <>
Subject: martin newell
Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 10:20:37 +0100

as far as i know martin newell of 'greatest living englishman' is the
same guy who writes the v. amusing rock poetry (and other sorts)
published in the Independent. He's published a couple of slim volumes of
which i have one, 'under milk float'. i'll dig it out. he was big mates
with Steve Marriot and he also features heavily in one of the funniest
books i've ever read about music, Giles Smith's 'Lost in Music'. Giles
Smith was in a band with his brothers in the seventies (a fairly bad
band as he admits). Apparently he and his brothers were rehearsing one
day and their mother came in and said 'what do you call yourselves,
then?' ('Pony' i think it was which is an unfortunate piece of rhyming
slang). She said 'why don't you call yourselves 'The Smiths'? which was
met with cries of 'oh, MOTHER', 'oh for goodness sakes mother'  etc etc.

Giles Smith was the music correspondent for the Independent which just
goes to show you about the british media, too. there are only about six
people and their mates and families running the whole thing.



Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 10:37:15 +0100
From: Dominic Lawson <>
Subject: Re: My very last response...

Q: "Harrison, mate, how the hell do you know Dom's a victim
   of hipness?

A: "I'd assumed that Dom's two missives to this digest made that
   fairly obvious, no?"

No, not really. Pay attention and stop trying to be clever. I never said I
had any interest in being "hip". OK, so I deserved a little abuse, but don't
assume you know me or how I live from a couple of off-the-cuff remarks in a
digest. Harrison's Soapbox was patronising, pompous, paranoid and, as a
result, mildly entertaining. He wishes to impress us with his
intellect. Fair enough, if a little juvenile.

I wasn't going to bother responding because although Harrison's overall
point was a reasonable one, it had no absolutely no relevance to what I
wrote. If you are assuming that because I like Hip Hop and Metal that
somehow I must be a victim of "hipness", you are displaying an ignorance of
the facts that is frankly appalling. Furthermore, I was not complaining
about Andrew Lloyd Webber, or whoever, for not being "hip". I was
complaining because his music is dreadful and because he is a deeply
unpleasant individual. I couldn't care less whether you perceive this as a
"trendy" view or not. It's my view, and that's my business.

I am entitled to this opinion, just as Harrison is entitled to spout
meaningless pseudo-intellectual nonsense. Besides which, which one of us is
having his ego massaged at this point?

Anyway, I have received a few e-mails from people who agree with me, and who
recognize humour and mischief-making when they see it. Thanks to them, for
not joining the ranks of the terminally self-satisfied.

I have apologised for my rash comments and I am more than willing to admit
to being in the wrong on more than one occasion. However, don't kid
yourselves that I have been successfully put in my place. When one of you
comes up with a decent argument, I'll be sure to respond. Until then, don't
flatter yourselves. A fairly trivial issue has been greatly exaggerated
thanks to a few snobby graduates. Good for you. I've got a degree too, but I
rarely leave it hanging out of my trousers.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 06:51:02 EDT
Subject: Re: Social Darwinism

>And about this surge of Libertarianism.  What is it really?  Lots of us,
>myself included, like to think of ourselves as "free thinkers" and
>associate the word "Libertarian" with "free thinker" hence, grabbing the
>bait.  Whenever I look closely at Libertarians however, I see folks who
>are nothing but Darwinists.

  Most of us consider ourselves advocates of Jeffersonian democracy.

>For example.  Libertarians appear to be liberal on social issues.
>They're the first to say "let people do as they will" and stop trying to
>but in, big government.  That sounds good on the surface but let's think
>it through, shall we?  A Libertarian would say, "it's unnecessary to
>have laws that require motorists to wear their seat belts or cyclists to
>wear crash helmets" and give the rationale that "people are rational and
>can decide for themselves what level of risk they should take" and
>"government needn't clog up the courts and the lawbooks with excess
>rules."  But, are people always rational?  Is every individual mature
>enough to make the wisest decision?

  Advocates of government intrusion into our lives tend to rationalise it by
assuming that the government is mostly, if not always, sensible and truly
looking out for our best interests. A seat belt or crash helmet law may be
in itself, but what comes next if we allow that? When do we say to
government, "that's enough, we can take it from here, thank you." It's an
important question to ask, because most of us like the idea of freedom until
something comes up that we're not too comfortable with. As a libertarian
it's better for me to allow freedom to something I abhor, because there may
be something I want to do that someone else would like to limit if he
could. The Libertarian Party has nothing to do with the left vs. right
debate; some of us came from the left(like me), some came from the
right. It's more to do with freedom vs.  power. When you advocate government
control, you're risking the government having power over you later in
another way that you might not want. There are some things that we need to
leave to the government, of course; Libertarians tend to disagree on the
extent of freedom from government, but the key is to err in the direction of
freedom, rather than government intervention.

>Their attitude flies in the face of studies that have shown these safety
>precautions to save lives and minimize injury, pain and suffering.
>Should we be ashamed if government passes a law requiring us to buckle
>up?  Should government back out of the social contract of acting in the>
>public good and use cost benefit analysis in its place?  Cost benefit
>analysis is the paradigm of business.  Should every aspect of our lives
>be run like a business?  Have any of you ever felt stifled by a lack of
>democracy at someplace you've worked?

  Good questions. Shame has nothing to do with it. Erring in the direction
of freedom set EVERYBODY free; everybody is allowed to believe as they like
and run their lives as they like without coercion. You pass a law that
limits freedom in any way, it can have unfortunate unexpected and unwanted
side effects.

>I hold no brief for government bloat but just because something is done
>by government does that make it wrong or inefficient?  Have any of you
>worked at a corporation that was inefficient? There's no magic to the
>labels "public" and "private" (contrary to what Libertarians and
>Republicans would have us believe).  Lately, I take a train that is run
>by government (CALTRAIN a division of AMTRACK which the Republicans
>would gleefully cut in heartbeat) that is on time, comfortable, reliable
>and reasonably priced.

  The trains ran on time in Nazi Germany too. 'Nuff said about that one.

>As for my politics, I say we need to take Ralph Nader's advice.  Have a
>choice in every ballot that says "none of the above."  If none of the
>above wins, then we have a runoff in 30 days time with a clean slate of
>candidates.  The cool thing about this is it would help take a lot of
>the big money out of our elections and would remove the need to vote for
>the least of the evils.

  The Libertarian Party recommends this too if there's no Libertarian
candidate on the ballot; the above is the next best thing. The question is,
does our government trust the people? I don't think either of the major
parties do on a fundamental level. The Democrats don't trust us with our
money, the Republicans don't trust us with our moral decisions. The
Libertarian Party is the only American party whose main platform consists of
fully trusting the people with their decisions concerning their lives. We're
not going to make the right decision all the time, but neither is our
government either; so isn't it better to err on the side of liberty in that



End of Chalkhills Digest #4-95

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